Dr. John Reid

(Lord Reid of Cardowan)

1947 -

Rt. Hon. Dr. John Reid MP
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Rt. Hon. Dr. John Reid MP

Politician. Born in Bellshill (North Lanarkshire), Reid was educated at St. Patrick's Secondary School in Coatbridge and at Stirling University, completing a doctorate in Economic History. He served as research officer for the Labour Party (1979-83); political adviser to Labour Party leader Neil Kinnock (1983-85) and Scottish organiser of the Trade Unionists for Labour (1986-87). Reid was elected as Member of Parliament for Motherwell North (1987), which was renamed Hamilton North and Bellshill (1997).

He acted as deputy to the Shadow Secretary of State for Defence (1995-7). Following the general election landslide of 1997, Reid was appointed Armed Forces Minister in the Blair government. He became Minister for Transport (1998) and became the first post-devolution Secretary of State for Scotland in 1999. This post has been criticised as an anachronism when Scotland again has its own Parliament. In 2001, he was the first Roman Catholic to be appointed Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, with the difficult responsibility of driving forward the peace process in that province. He was appointed Secretary of State for Defence in 2005 and Home Secretary a year later. He left the Cabinet in 2007 and stood down from Parliament three years later, at which point he was elevated to the peerage as Lord Reid of Cardowan. He was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Stirling in 2009.

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